$1,250,000 Settlement for Driver Rear-Ended by Commercial Box Truck

Court and County

Supreme, Queens

Plaintiff Description

48 years old at time of accident; native of Guyana, U.S. citizen; married with two children, ages 17 and 20

Description of Case

On June 22nd, 2016, our client was approaching a traffic light at the intersection of Fountain Ave. and Linden Blvd. in Brooklyn. Our client approached the light, it turned yellow, and he began to slow down. As he slowed down, anticipating that the light would soon turn red, a box truck owned by PC Richards merged into our client's lane and rear-ended him.

The defendant later claimed that our client had stopped at a green light rather than yellow. He claimed he then slammed on his brakes and swerved to the right but was still unable to avoid our client's vehicle. However, he was in the process of changing lanes and so was not keeping his full attention at the traffic light at the time of the collision. Summary judgement regarding liability was filed, and the defendant did not oppose.

Injuries

Initially, no ambulance was called as our client did not realize he had suffered any severe injuries, though he was feeling pain in his neck, lower back, left shoulder and left knee. Eventually the pain got worse, and he decided to visit a doctor. At this point he was experiencing moderate spasms in his neck and lower back. His doctor also noticed that his range of motion was limited.

Despite his initial confidence that he had not suffered any serious injuries, after a few days, our client's pain continued to worsen. His neck pain began to radiate down into the top of his left back, and his lower back continued to ache and spasm.

To combat his mounting pain, our client began to go to physical therapy, particularly to help relieve his lower back pain. These efforts proved ineffective, however, and he required cervical spinal fusion surgery.

To his distress, however, this surgery did not do much to relieve his pain. His neck pain continued to get worse and multiple MRI's had to be performed to determine what may have gone wrong, though nothing was initially obvious. His neck pain began to interfere with his sleep, and it was around this time he began taking Tramadol every 8 hours to try and combat his symptoms.

It was ultimately determined our client suffered extensive neck and shoulder injuries as the result of this incident:

  • Cervical spine: Cervical herniations at C5/6 and C6/7 with annular tear at C6/7, ultimately requiring a cervical discectomy and fusion
  • Left shoulder: labral tear; partial-thickness articular-sided superior subscapularis and anterior supraspinatus tendon tears; required arthroscopic surgery
  • Lumbar spine: Bulging disc at L4/5 associated with an annular tear; bulging disc at L5/S1; required nerve block injections

Settlement

This case settled during mediation for $1,250,000.

Handling Attorneys

This matter was handled by Daniel P. O'Toole and Frederick C. Aranki.

If you have been injured as a result of a truck accident or other motor vehicle collision, Block O'Toole & Murphy can help you recover compensation for your damages. Call 212-736-5300 or contact us online to receive a free legal consultation.